Quarterly Meeting of the State Committee of Vendors

Friday, September 10, 2021

Chairman James Warth called the meeting to order at 9:00am. Janet Chernoff, Administrative Services Consultant called the role.  

The following individuals were present:
James Warth, Chairman
Terri Lindstrom, Vice Chairman

District Representatives: Kurt Ponchak, District 1; Mike Renaud, District 2; Mitzi Bowen, District 3; Randall Crosby, District 4; David Stevens, District 5; Phil Hubbard, District 6; Jose Quintanilla, District 7; Sead Bekric, District 8; Joel Rose, District 9. Alicia Villeda, District 10 Alternate.

Bureau of Business Enterprise Staff: Bill Findley, Bureau Chief; Maureen Fink, Operations Manager; Alan Risk, Compliance Officer; John Ahler, Business Analyst; Janet Chernoff, Administrative Services Consultant.

Licensed Vendors: Mark Turner, District 4 Alternate; TJ McCormick, District 7 Alternate; Mary Hayes, District 8 Alternate; Marylynn Giles-Robinson, Orlando Ramirez, Antonio Gonzalez.

Kurt Ponchak made a motion to adopt the agenda as written. Approved by voice vote.

Biennial Seminar – All

On August 19, 2021 Bill Findley had advised vendors of the decision to postpone the Biennial Seminar until November 19-20, 2021. This meeting was called to further discuss options for the Biennial and the election of Chairman and Vice Chairman.

A number of district representatives held meetings to get input from the vendors in their districts. Areas of concern included safety and cost of the event. Some vendors were concerned that the November date is too close to the Thanksgiving holidays. A number of options were discussed including virtual sessions, changing locations or moving the event to the winter/spring 2022.

Kurt Ponchak made a motion to do a virtual election prior to October 31. Seconded by Sead. There was discussion about voting on the election prior to make a decision on the November date. Alan Risk read from the by-laws which stated “The Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of the Committee shall be elected by a simple majority of votes cast by vendors in attendance at a biennial meeting of vendors”. There is nothing in the by-laws that indicates that the election has to be done in conjunction with the educational sessions. The by-laws also do not require that minimum number of vendors be in attendance to hold an election. Mitzi edited the motion to state that the nominations would be on October 28 and election on October 29th. Seconded by Joel.  There was a short discussion about the dates and alternatives were suggested.

Ultimately Kurt Ponchak revised the motion. The motion was that a virtual meeting would be held on Thursday, October 14 at 4pm Eastern to nominate candidates for Chairman and Vice Chairman. The candidates will have an opportunity to speak and answer questions immediately following the nominations. The election will be held on Friday, October 15, 2021 at 4pm Eastern.

The logistics were discussed and Alan Risk indicated he will be available to moderate the candidate question and answer session. Janet Chernoff explained that a survey monkey would be prepared after the nominations. A roll call will be done prior to the election and the survey link will only be sent to those in attendance. Janet will be available to help anyone who has problems with the survey format. A roll call vote was taken and all in attendance voted yes. District 10 was not represented. The motion passed without objection.

Kurt Ponchak made a motion to postpone the seminar until spring 2022 and to look at location options with a virtual back up plan. Jim Warth suggested that the committee vote on the November dates before talking about alternatives. Kurt Ponchak made a motion not to hold the Biennial Seminar in November 2021. Seconded by Sead Bekric. The motion was passed by voice vote.

The discussion moved on to options for a Biennial at a future date and whether it should be done in person or virtual. Ultimately it was decided that it is too early to make a decision and that the subject should wait until the new committee took office.

Start Date for Newly Elected Committee Members

The group asked for clarification on when the newly elected Committee members would take office. Alan Risk read the following from the by-laws “Each newly elected Committee member shall take office upon the adjournment of such biennial meeting”. The newly elected representatives will take office when the meeting on October 15th is adjourned. Mark Turner asked if the by-laws could be amended by the Committee. The by-laws can only be amended by statewide meeting or mail ballot involving the entire membership of eligible vendors.

Committee of Vendors Meeting Schedule 2021- 2022

Janet Chernoff advised the group that December 10-11, 2021 and January 7-8, 2022 were being held at the Embassy Suites in Orlando for the next committee meeting. Sead Bekric made a motion to schedule the next committee meeting in person on December 10-11, 2021. Seconded by Mitzi Bowen. Passed by voice vote. Janet Chernoff advised the group of the dates for committee meetings in 2022. The following dates have been reserved: March 18-19, June 10-11, August 19-20 and December 2-3. Kurt Ponchak made a motion to accept those dates unless circumstances make it necessary to make a change. Seconded by Mitzi Bowen. Passed by voice vote.

Phil Hubbard made a motion to adjourn. Seconded by Kurt Ponchak. The meeting adjourned at 10am.


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